It doesn’t take a weatherman

Wednesday, October 29th, 2008

In Magna cum laundry, Richard Fernandez cites an excerpt from the 1982 documentary No Place to Hide, in which undercover agent Larry Grathwohl discusses the Weathermen’s post-revolution plans for the United States:

As he points out, the Weathermen’s plans included putting parts of the United States under the control of Cuba, North Vietnam, China and Russia and “re-educating” the “uncooperative” in camps in the Southwest. An estimated 25 million “unreconstructable” die-hards would need “liquidating”.

Grathwohl can’t believe the people with advanced degrees would suggest such a crazy plan. Fernandez can’t believe that anyone else would:

What’s hard to imagine is sitting in a room full of plumbers discussing the same thing. The longer I live the less I believe that humanity is able to live without submitting itself to some kind of belief system. Western Civilization decided to liberate itself from a belief in Christ — whose Kingdom was not of this world — and went straight to the altars of Nazism and Communism, whose kingdom was in the camps. People like Ayers aren’t atheists, they’re true believers. GK Chesterton was right when he said that a man who declares he has stopped believing in God often doesn’t mean he believes in nothing. It only means he’s willing to believe in anything.

Jean Paul Sarte believed Che Guevara was “not only an intellectual but also the most complete human being of our age … [the] era’s most perfect man”, which just goes to show you can get a fancy diploma from the École Normale Supérieure and still graduate with not an iota of common sense. Unclogging a drain with a snake is something anyone with a little intelligence and persistence can do. Planning the death of millions of Americans takes an education.

If you’re not familiar with the Weathermen, they were revolutionary Communists who split off from the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) in 1969 and went on to lead riots and to bomb a number of targets: the Haymarket Police Statue in Chicago, several police cars in Chicago and Berkeley, the Golden Gate Park branch of the San Francisco Police Department (killing one officer and injuring a number of other policemen), etc.

They took their name from the lyric “You don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows,” from the Bob Dylan song “Subterranean Homesick Blues,” and they declared themselves a “white fighting force” allied with the “Black Liberation Movement” to achieve “the destruction of US imperialism and achieve a classless world: world communism.”

Today they’re best known for being the terrorist group Bill Ayers co-founded.

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